Recruitment Resources Toolkit

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A kiosk in the waiting room of the Conventus building is manned by patient ambassadors. Literature from clinical and behavioral studies that are recruiting is distributed to patients of UBMD physicians.

There are a wide variety of tools available to University at Buffalo researchers and their Buffalo Translational Consortium partners that can enhance recruitment for research studies. From feasibility through follow-up, these tools can help bolster accrual rates and increase retention.

Resources for Researchers and Study Teams

This toolkit serves as a guide for researchers who want to learn more about enhancing recruitment for their research studies. Depending on the study, multiple tools may be used. If you have any questions about a tool, please contact our recruitment team for personalized guidance.  

Clinical trials

Study Information Portal (SIP)

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The Study Information Portal (SIP) is a registry of clinical and behavioral studies conducted by researchers at the University at Buffalo that are presently recruiting subjects. Researchers from UB, UB|MD, Kaleida Health System and Erie County Medical Center may elect to have their research studies listed on the SIP. The portal allows potential participants to search by area of interest or disease and lists the associated studies.

Purpose
To recruit potential participants into your study.

Access
When registering your study in the Central Study Registration, select Yes” next to the question “Do you want this study visible to the public on the UB Website?”

Clinicaltrials.gov

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ClinicalTrials.gov is a global registry and results database of publicly and privately supported clinical studies involving human participants.

Purpose
Failure to register your study may result in the inability to publish in selected professional journals. 

Access
Visit the ClinicalTrials.gov registration page.

Trial Innovation Network

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The Trial Innovation Network is a collaborative national network that focuses on operational innovation, excellence and collaboration, and leverages the expertise and resources of the CTSA Program.

Purpose
To be involved with a network that can connect you to multi-site trials.

Access
The Trial Innovation Network offers study investigators the ability to request an initial consultation or specific services depending on the funding status of the proposal. 

Patient databases

Buffalo Research Registry (BRR)

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The Buffalo Research Registry (BRR) is a database of people from Buffalo and Western New York who have shown interest in becoming research study volunteers. Potential participants fill out a health profile that is used to match them with eligible research studies based on the information they provide and the interests they have indicated. BRR's goal is to connect willing volunteers and researchers quickly and appropriately.

Purpose
To recruit potential participants into your study (with special attention to underrepresented populations and minorities).

Access
You can use it one of two ways:

  1. If you would like a list of participants who may meet your eligibility criteria so that your team can reach out to them, include it in your protocol.
  2. Our Community Engagement team will reach out to potential participants to inform them about your study.

ResearchMatch.org

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ResearchMatch is a free and secure national registry of people who want to get involved in a clinical trial but may not know where to start. Major American academic institutions created the registry so individuals could participate in studies.

Purpose
To recruit potential participants into your study.

Access
Include language in your protocol that you plan to utilize ResearchMatch.

i2b2 and TriNetX

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These programs allow access to searchable, de-identified clinical patient data. To date, they contain data from some 700,000 UB|MD patients. Investigators throughout the Buffalo Translational Consortium can use i2b2 and TriNetX at no cost.  

Purpose
1. To determine feasibility and project enrollment.
2. To recruit  specific populations directly.

Access
First, sign up for an account. Click on the "Request Access" tab. In “brief project description,” mention that you would like access to both TriNetX and i2b2.

For feasibility use, login and enter your search terms. For recruitment use, you must first obtain IRB approval. 

  1. Submit a protocol amendment or include your intent to use  i2b2/TriNetX in your new submission to the IRB. 
  2. Once approved, the Institute for Healthcare Informatics (IHI) team will provide you with contact information for the patients in your search.
  3. If, after contacting the patient’s provider, the provider does not object, you may contact the patient by mail and then by phone.

REDcap

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REDCap is a mature, secure web application for building and managing online surveys and databases. Using REDCap's streamlined process for rapidly developing projects, you may create and design projects using:

  1. The online method from your web browser using the Online Designer; and/or
  2. The offline method by constructing a 'data dictionary' template file in Microsoft Excel, which can be later uploaded into REDCap. 

Both surveys and databases (or a mixture of the two) can be built using these methods.

Purpose

REDCap provides automated export procedures for seamless data downloads to Excel and common statistical packages (SPSS, SAS, Stata, R), as well as a built-in project calendar, a scheduling module, ad hoc reporting tools and advanced features, such as branching logic, file uploading and calculated fields.

Access

For an overview of its features and some quick video tutorials of REDCap in action, please see the Training Resources page.

NOTICE: If you are collecting data for the purposes of human subjects research, review and approval of the project is required by your Institutional Review Board.

If you require assistance or have any questions about REDCap, please contact Mike Schlicht 716-829-6679.

ECMC Department of Emergency Medicine Research Assistant Program

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This program recruits, consents and enrolls patients in clinical studies while they are in the highest-volume emergency departments in the area: ECMC, Buffalo General Medical Center, Millard Fillmore Suburban, DeGraff Memorial Hospital and the Veterans’ Affairs Medical Center.  

They are are also a member of the Emergency Research Network in the Empire State (ERNIES), a collaborative designed to conduct multi-institution research projects.

Purpose
The program can assist you with projects of your own and partner with you on projects that would be appropriate for emergency medicine collaboration.

Access
For more information or to discuss opportunities for collaboration, contact the research director for the Department of Emergency Medicine.

Consulting

CTSI Individualized Recruitment Consultation

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If your study is in the planning or grant writing phase:

  • We can help you develop a recruitment approach best suited for your research. We can offer insight on recruitment tools and compensation models, advertising materials, connect you with community partners, provide coordinator training and facilitate a review of your study materials by community members.

If your study is already approved by the IRB:

  • Our team will request the study’s IRB-approved protocol for review, as well as any IRB-approved recruitment materials.

Purpose
Our recruitment team will help you create a personalized plan to achieve your accrual goals. 

Access
Request an individualized recruitment consultation through the CTSI service request portal.

Community Engagement Team

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One of the CTSI Community Engagement team’s main objectives is to increase  overall participation in clinical trials, with a special focus on the recruitment and retention of disparate populations. 

The team also offers help with:

  • linkages to community partners
  • creating or refining strategies for recruitment and retention of special populations
  • creating culturally sensitive recruitment and dissemination materials
  • identifying opportunities to market or advertise studies at health fairs and community programs
  • writing consent forms
  • training coordinators and assistants in informed consent best practices

Purpose
To recruit underserved populations into your study or for help creating a recruitment and retention plan that engages community members.

Access
Request a consultation through the CTSI service request portal.

Biostat Consultation

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A consultation on the statistical design of your study, including power analysis.

Purpose
Your consultation will give you assistance with power calculations to determine the appropriate sample size for your study. 

Access
Request a biostat consultation through the CTSI service request portal. Typically, 10 hours of initial support for standard data analysis projects are provided free of charge.

Advertising

Research Table in Conventus Main Waiting Room

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The Patient Voices Network and the Community Engagement team host a table at Conventus to share information with the community about research projects at UB. The table, located in the waiting room on the 4th floor, is staffed by a Patient Voices Network member trained to answer questions about research Monday, Wednesday, and Friday from 10 a.m. - 2 p.m. and recrutiment materials are displayed for patients to browse when the table is not staffed.

Purpose
To promote your study to patients who use Coventus clinics.

Access
Contact the Community Engagement team with your recruitment materials to request that they be displayed on the table. Materials undergo a brief review process before being put on display.

Coming soon

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An app that lists active studies in our network (UB, UB|MD, Kaleida and ECMC) by location is currently under development by our informatics team. If a potential participant asks to be contacted about your study, their information will be sent to your study coordinator.

Purpose
To recruit potential participants into your study.

Access
Include in your protocol that you plan to list your study in the app.